Six-Banana Banana Bread
There’s no chance of wimpy or lackluster banana flavor here.
I baked six bananas into one loaf. Yes, six.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my gold standard recipe for banana bread. It’s everything I want and it never lets me down. But I also cheat on it from time to time. Say, with 35+ Banana Recipes, and about 15 of them are recipes for various Banana Breads. You can never have too many.
I wanted to pack more pure banana essence and intensity into the bread and so I used more bananas.
A whole lot more.
When I decided I to make it, I went to the grocery store in hopes of finding some of those red sticker overripe banana bundles, but nothing. Every banana I found was as green as a lime. And in the 3 weeks since, every time I’ve gone to the store, there are oodles of red bundles. Bad banana karma.
I bought 15 bananas that day. Nine to get us through the week, and 6 to sit on the counter and ripen for the week. I felt like a zookeeper buying bananas for the monkeys.
If you thought your bananas had to be black as the night for banana bread, they don’t. Nicely freckled and speckled, but pitch black is not necessary. Cook’s Illustrated found there’s little difference in sweetness between freckled and completely black (see item 1o). Ripe is fine. They don’t have to be nearly rotting.
The batter comes together in minutes with just a whisk. Nothing to cream, drag your mixer out for, or get too fussy about.
Rather than using 1 to 1 1/2 cups of bananas which is what most recipes call for, I used a solid 2 1/2 cups. To compensate for the extra banana volume and moisture, I cut back on the amount of Greek yogurt (or sour cream) I usually use.
I added a box of instant vanilla pudding mix because I use it in my other favorite recipe. Of the first ingredients in pudding mix is cornstarch, which is a workhorse for keeping cakes, cookies, and bread extremely soft, light, tender, and moist.
I’ve tried omitting it, and have trialed various combinations of buttermilk, sour cream, Greek yogurt, butter, and oil. But the pudding mix bread wins every time. If you can’t find pudding in your area (international readers write about this), I recommend one-quarter cup of additional flour, two teaspoons of cornstarch, and a dash of extra sugar.
As I was filling up the 9×5 loaf pan, it was looking awfully full. I decided to play it safe and made a little mini 5×3 loaf, too. About three muffins worth. I’d rather be safe than clean my oven floor.
As an aside, this Set of 4 Mini Loaf Pans for $9.99 comes in so handy and so often, for that little bit of extra batter I find myself with when making quickbreads, cakes, or muffins. It’s so much easier to grab one little mini pan than clean a 12-cup muffin pan. And mini loaves are cute and make great gifts to give a friend, teacher, or co-worker, just because.
I baked the mini loaf for 35 minutes and the big loaf for 68 minutes. Because bananas vary widely in moisture content as do ovens, baking times will vary. Watch your bread, not the clock.
In the last 10 minutes of cooking, I tented the 9×5 pan with foil because the center hadn’t quite set, but the edges and top surface were getting a smidge on the dark side. I recommend covering with foil if at any point your bread is looking a little dark.
The verdict is that this bread is everything and more. It’s super soft, tender and supremely moist. The pudding mix serves to add some lightness, fluffiness, and springiness.
Because of the 6 bananas, don’t expect a super light and airy loaf. It’s on the heavier and denser side, but I think all good banana bread should be. I don’t want light, airy, cakey, or dry. I want moist, heavy, and dense.
The real clincher is that all those bananas really make a difference in the overall banana flavor and intensity level. If you’ve ever felt like your banana bread is a bit underwhelming in banana intensity level, this recipe will cure that. It’s bursting with banana flavor. I mean, duh.
Now, depending on how many bananas I have to use, I have two favorite recipes; my old gold standard and this new one.
You’ll never have to wonder again just how you’ll possibly use all your ripe bananas with this freckled banana-hogging recipe in your arsenal. Kill six with one loaf.
You may even find yourself wishing for some speckly and freckly ones.
Six-Banana Banana Bread
If you’ve ever felt your banana bread is a little lackluster in pure banana-flavored intensity, this recipe changes all that. Six bananas are baked into a soft, fluffy, dense, and supremely moist loaf. The bread is full of robust banana intensity, and is perfect for times when your ripe bananas seem to multiply on your counter.
1/4 cup unsalted butter (half of 1 stick), melted
2 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup sour cream or thick Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 medium/large very ripe bananas, mashed (2 1/2 cups mashed bananas; if your bananas are huge you may only need 4 or 5; if they’re small, you may need more)
one 3.4-ounce box vanilla instant pudding mix (not Cook ‘n Serve)
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch salt, optional and to taste
- Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9×5 loaf pan with floured cooking spray, or grease and flour the pan; set aside. If necessary, you may need to use a muffin pan or mini loaf for pan a small amount of batter.
- In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter, about 1 minute on high power. Allow the butter to cool momentarily so you don’t scramble the eggs.
- Add the eggs, sugars, sour cream, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
- Add the bananas and stir to incorporate
- Add the pudding mix (just add it dry like a dry ingredient; don’t actually make pudding), flour, baking soda, cinnamon, optional salt, and fold in with spatula or stir gently with a spoon; don’t overmix or bread will be tougher.
- Bake 9×5 loaf for 60 to 75 minutes (I baked 68 minutes), or until the top is domed, golden, and the center is set, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. In the final 10 to 15 minutes of cooking, or at any point if your bread is getting a bit dark before the center is setting, tent with foil.
- If baking a mini loaf is necessary, bake for about 35 minutes, or until done; I estimate 2 or 3 muffins will take about 20 to 25 minutes. Baking times for loaves will vary based on moisture content of bananas, pan sizes, climate, and oven variances. Bake until done; watch your bread, not the clock.
- Allow bread to cool in pan for about 20 minutes before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely before slicing and serving. Serve plain, or with butter, jam, Honey Butter, Cinnamon-Sugar Butter, Strawberry Butter, Vanilla Browned Butter Glaze, or your favorite spread. Makes excellent French toast. Bread will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Recipe from Averie Cooks. All images and content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or simply link back to this post for the recipe. Thank you.
All images and content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or simply link back to this post for the recipe. Thank you.
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Do you have a favorite banana bread recipe?
Or favorite recipe that uses ripe bananas?